BATTLE CREEK, Mich. (WOOD) — Centrica Care Navigators, a nonprofit healthcare agency, held their annual Butterfly Release event Saturday, giving friends and families a chance to commemorate the lives of loved ones they had lost.
The Butterfly Release happened at 10 a.m. Saturday at Leila Arboretum at 928 West Michigan Avenue in Battle Creek.
As community members came together and read the names of their loved ones, a butterfly was released into the garden for every name that was called.
Organizers said they try to get different butterflies that are native to Michigan every year.
This year, painted lady butterflies were released.
“Gathering as a community to share stories and memories and be present for each other is an important expression of grief,” said Centrica Care Navigators’ CEO Kelly McCormick in a press release. “Thank you for joining us as we celebrate and remember your loved ones.”
The Butterfly Release was open to everyone, including those with loved ones who did not receive hospice care from Centrica Care Navigators.
For some attendees, the event was a way to process the emotions that happened after losing a loved one.
“Losing someone is hard,” said attendee Cheryl Mackinder. “Oh yeah, I held it, whether it’s expected or not. You know, it’s just really, really hard. And you’ve got, everyone’s going to go through it at some point in their life.”
The event helps Centrica Care Navigators’ grief support programs, which are available for free to anyone in southwest Michigan.
To learn more, visit CentricaCare.org.